First all-girl Cub Scout Pack forms in Delaware

Cub Scout Pack 25 includes, front row from left, Samantha Rousseau, Mia DeCaro, Piper Bussart, Summer Marsland and Carlee Parrett. Back row, Rachael DeCaro, Brett Bussart, Dan Marsland and Ida Parrett. (Submitted photo/Scouts BSA)

MIDDLETOWN — They didn’t leave Girl Scouts really.

It’s more a case of joining Cub Scouts.

Both groups have great programs, but they’re different nonetheless. Some girls still do both.

In February, Boy Scouts of America opened up membership for girls ages 11 to 17.

Nine members comprise the first Del-Mar-Va Council-based all girls BSA pack in the Middletown area. They’re quite interested in camping, hiking and swimming, and earning a wide array of 200 merit badges.

“There is some real pride in being the first,” said Ida Parrett, the Cub Master and Arrow of Light leader.

“The support has been great in the community.”

During each recruiting trip to area schools, girls indicated interest in what the BSA was doing, and enough stepped forward to form Cub Scout Pack 25.

Ms. Parrett called on years of experience with her Boy Scout son. She’d taken daughter Carlee to all Cub Scout meetings, but the younger Parrett couldn’t participate in any programs the boys were.

“It was upsetting,” Carlee Parrett said.

Taking part in a cyber bully avoidance activity are Pack 25 members, from left, Summer Marsland (with back facing camera), Mia DeCaro, Julianna Eddis, Samantha Rousseau, Piper Bussart and Carlee Parrett. (Submitted photo/Scouts BSA)

Ms. Parrett reached out to Rachel DeCaro (with daughter Mia thrilled to join in) and forming the unique pack had begun. Brenda Harkins stepped up as Charter Organization Representative for American Legion Auxiliary Canal Unit 25 and Cub Scout Pack 25 as the leaderhip team formed.

The pack struggled at first to find girls to officially commit to the program, but early results are promising — a popcorn fundraiser raised $7,000 allocated for Camp Rodney and other needs.

According to Scouts BSA, “From orienteering (and getting lost), to learning how to use flint and steel, to cooking over a fire and spending a winter night camping out, they have already done so much in a short time.”

With Ms. DeCaro and Ms. Parrett leading the way, the first steps were taken to form the pack.

“Mia was there for everything in Scouts that her twin Tommy did and since Scouts BSA pushes families, where the parents are encouraged to stay, it was great for all of us,” said Ms. DeCaro, a pack committee chair.

“What they were learning in Cub Scouts was really impressive and interesting. Mia loved it but couldn’t get the recognition that her brother could.

Pack 25 meets once monthly at Alfred G. Waters Middle School in Middletown, and den meetings are held twice monthly. (Submitted photo/Scouts BSA)

“Then, we saw the news and Ida texted and after deciding we wanted to be an all-girl pack, we started working.”

Mia is looking forward to meeting Eagle Scout requirements in a few years.

“This has made me feel like I can do anything,” she said. “It’s not just for boys. There aren’t boundaries and we’re able to do something we love.”

The Parretts remain involved with Girl Scouts as well and Carlee is reportedly thrilled to do both.

“This is just a wonderful opportunity for girls nationwide,” Ms. Parrett said. “We plan to stay involved with Girl Scouts too as it provides the best of both worlds.

“The pair well together but Scouts BSA takes things even further. They provide great structure and it’s great that gender isn’t a deterrent.”

For inquiries on joining “Scout Me In” contact Rick Suhrbier at 302-622-3300, email rsuhrbier@dmvc.org.

Reach staff writer Craig Anderson at canderson@newszap.com

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